The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

There are about half-a-thousand brands of pre-workout supplements available in the global market today. It is a proof of the growing demand for energy-boosting compounds nowadays from both the throng of serious bodybuilders and the growing ranks of fitness enthusiasts.

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It is perhaps, more and more modern gym-goers want to optimize their desired results in each workout session, or simply needing a good energy boost to stick to their respective training schedules after a hectic and strenuous workday. And more often than not, it’s both.

One problem with pre-workout stimulants is that around 9 out of 10 available kinds in the market contain high doses of caffeine.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Since a high percentage of gym-goers preferred, or simply have no choice but to train after office hours or practically close to bedtime, there is a good possibility that those products’ rousing effect may hinder a good night’s sleep.

And we all know that the recovery phase is as important as the workout itself in growing muscles and burning fat cells. The good news is that the tenth part that remains are caffeine-free, and more than 10% of them are truly worth buying.

Why Caffeine-Free?

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Besides the obvious reason cited above, a sudden high dose of caffeine could induce gluconeogenesis (GNG), or the metabolic process wherein non-carbohydrate carbon substrates are turned into glucose.

Among the said substrates in humans are glucogenic amino acids such as alanine, glutamine, arginine and more.

In the process, these substrates, which are potential cell volumizers and protein synthesizers for your muscles are converted to energy fuel instead. It’s practically like using timbers meant for building as firewood.

Yes, you were able to utilize it, but the thought that it could have been used for a better purpose is there.

You may interject that the very purpose of a pre-workout supplement is to get you all fired for intense physical training, so why shun a powerful stimulant like caffeine? That is where suitable substitutes come in.

Ingredients that can give you a surge of energy and stamina and help you zone in on your workout, while at the same time promote muscle growth, fat reduction, and other healthful benefits.

What Key Ingredients Should I Look for in a Caffeine-Free Pre-Workout Supplement?

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

In a nutshell: natural nutrients and amino acids. If you want to get stronger with more lean muscle mass, then you need the right building blocks. A good caffeine-free pre-workout supplement should contain the following essential nutrients and amino acids that are not only great stimulants but will also help you attain and maintain the ideal physique that you dream of:

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement
  • Citrulline - An organic compound first isolated and identified by Japanese scientists in the early 1900’s. It can be found in small doses in apples and watermelons.

Its most key function is increasing the production of nitric oxide (NO) in your body and dilating the NO pathways or blood vessels, thus intensifying the flow of blood and oxygen in your skeletal muscles and other vital makeups such as cardiovascular, digestive, neurological, reproductive, and respiratory systems. 

Among the immediate benefits of this process is enlarging your muscle pumps, thus optimizing your workout result. It likewise helps prevent and/or remedy erectile dysfunction (ED).

Citrulline also acts as a vital intermediate in the urea cycle, or the process wherein ammonia and nitrogenous toxins are flushed out of our system.

Among its constructive outcomes are enhancing our athletic performance (both in strength training and aerobic department), minimizing fatigue and soreness, and reducing post-workout recovery time. It is also known to prevent or slow down dementia.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement
  • Creatine - A nitrogenous organic acid that is known to boost strength and incite muscle growth. Isolated and identified in 1832 by French chemist Michel Eugene Chevreul, who was credited with the discovery of various fatty acids and one of the 72 French scientists and engineers whose name was inscribed in the Eiffel Tower, creatine is probably one of the longest and most researched OTC amino acid supplement today.

Not only that creatine helps increase muscularity and strength, it was learned that continuous intake of this substance also has a positive cumulative effect in bodybuilding.

It is not highly applicable though for endurance-centric sports such as running, basketball and swimming, and must be taken with other supplements in doing aerobic exercises.

  • BCAA’s or Branched-Chain Amino Acids – This name actually refers to a trio of protein-creating amino acids, namely Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine.

It primarily acts as fuel for skeletal muscles’ function and accounts for 35% of the essential amino acids in muscle proteins. It has been observed that bodybuilders who took BCAA supplements gained greater muscle strength in tackling weights and resistance training sessions.

They also gained significant lean muscle mass and lose fat at a faster rate than before taking the supplements.

  • Beta-Alanine – Although classified as a “non-essential” amino acid, beta-alanine is a precursor to carnosine that goes directly to muscles and brain tissues. Carnosine, which is formed inside the body when beta-alanine combines with another amino acid histidine, not only carries a bunch of antioxidants but it was also proven to aid in building lean muscle mass.

Why not a carnosine supplement then? Because when you directly ingest clinically formed carnosine compounds, your digestive system will just break it down and flushes it out of your system rather than going directly to your muscles.

Taking beta-alanine supplements, on the other hand, was proven to increase carnosine concentration in muscle fibers, thus resulting in improved athletic performance and fatigue reduction.

To assist you in making an informed choice, we listed five of the currently most popular caffeine-free pre-workout supplements in the market.

We scrutinized them using the presence and amount of each of the recommended caffeine substitutes listed above in their respective formulations:

1. STIM-FREE Pre-Workout Supplement by Transparent Lab

Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout

Via: transparentlabs.com

Consistently garnering rave reviews from regular users and various product assessors, STIM-FREE is definitely on top of its game.

Rightly so, it was clinically formulated to contain a hefty amount of each of the right stuff mentioned above, along with at least 7 other active ingredients.

One of which is betaine anhydrous, a complex vitamin derived from choline-rich food such as spinach, beets, seafood, and cereal grains that support liver health. It is highly recommended for both men and women who engage in high-intensity workout sessions.

Pros

Each serving contains (26g/scoop) approx. 6g of L-Citrulline, 3g of creatine HCL, 6g of BCAA in 2:1:1 ratio and 4g of Beta-Alanine. These doses are actually twice as much than found in most of its competitors’ formulas.

  • Proven to rev up your energy, endurance and focus during workout resulting in strength and muscle mass buildup, as well as fat loss.
  • ​Proven activation of functional ingredients that increases your body’s nitric oxide and carnosine production resulting to enlargement of muscle pumps during the workout.
  • No heart-racing or jittery sensation and doesn’t impede sleep.
  • ​No artificial flavorings and food dyes.
  • Each jug contains 30 servings. They also have a discounted rate when you order 2 or more jugs at the same time.

Cons

  • There are several users and reviewers who are not satisfied with the taste. Some people find it too tangy and tart, whether it is the apple or the blue raspberry flavor variant.
  • It causes paresthesia or a temporary tingling feeling, a common side effect of high dose of beta-alanine. It is harmless though and it passes after a few minutes into your workout.

2. GAT PMP (Peak Muscle Performance)

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Via: Amazon.com

This product is actually been getting mixed reviews among male bodybuilders, but a hit with the women. It is probably due to its pleasant flavor and well-rounded formulation that apparently works well for those who are trying to get leaner and slimmer.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

But somehow, it falls short of the expectations of serious bodybuilders, especially those who are yet to be weaned away from caffeine or stimulant-laden supplements.

Its performance enhancing makeup is listed as proprietary blends instead of individual ingredients, namely NO Enhancers, Pump Accelerators, PMP Focus & Cognition Modulators and PMP Energetics. It also contains some of the mainstays in most multivitamin formulations such as Thiamine, Niacin, B-12, and Calcium.

Pros

  • It contains multivitamins on top of the proprietary performance enhancing blends.
  • It apparently works well as a performance enhancer in endurance-based workouts. It is recommendable to those who are newbies in pre-workout supplements, women, and men who are not intending to bulk up like a professional wrestler.
  • ​It contains at least two of the recommended caffeine substitutes, namely citrulline, and beta-alanine, albeit in small doses.
  • Many of its users rave about the pleasantness of its taste.

Cons

  • Although it contains NO enhancers, it seems to be in a minuscule amount that disappoints many serious bodybuilders. In fact, the combination of Beta-Alanine, L-Arginine Malate, L-Citrulline, L-Citrulline Malate, and L-Norvaline only amounts to 3.125g per serving.
  • It doesn’t contain creatine and BCAA.
  • In spite of having an obvious kick like its caffeine-laden predecessors, many felt that its effect doesn’t last long enough and falls short in high-intensity workouts. Some also attest that it doesn’t deliver enough when it comes to the pump department.

3. BPI Sports Pump HD Pre-training Power and Energy Fuel Powder

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Via: Amazon.com

This is one product that really lives up to its name. Various testers noticed the palpable vasodilation effect of this pre-workout supplement, making it highly effective in isolation exercises.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Whether you are focusing on your back, chest, legs, biceps, triceps, shoulders or abs, Pump HD seems to have the uncanny ability to zero-in on your targeted muscle group. Some even attest that you could almost feel the thickening of every fiber of the muscles you are training after each set. It really sets you on course in achieving high-definition muscles in each pump.

​Pros

  • The product seems to be smartly formulated to focus on any specific muscle group you are working on.
  • It contains active ingredients that cause vasodilation and increased production of nitric oxide (NO), thus promoting lean muscle mass growth.
  • ​It contains a gram of creatine Pcr per serving, which as mentioned has a cumulative effect in muscle buildup.
  • ​It also functions as multivitamins with the presence of various vitamins and minerals such as B-Complex, niacin, folic acid, iron, potassium, and sodium. It also contains green tea extract catechins, which are loaded with amino acids and antioxidants.
  • It has a pleasant taste similar to Kool-Aid.

​Cons

  • With the absence of caffeine or beta-alanine, one of its great substitutes, you often do not feel a sudden rush of energy at the start of your workout. It usually kicks in though after a set or two of exercises.
  • Many bodybuilders surmised that one scoop is not enough per serving. You have to double up to really feel its full potency, especially during high-intensity workouts.
  • It is particularly designed for weight and resistance training and not so much for cardio or aerobic workout.

4. Evogen EVP Grape – 450 grams

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Via: Amazon.com

Not only that it was one of the first clinically formulated caffeine-free pre-workout supplements, Evogen EVP is one of the best-engineered and well-rounded product in its class. It was designed to both prime your muscle pumps for weights and resistance training, and to aid your body in post-workout recovery.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

It contains all the four recommended caffeine substitutes discussed above in one proprietary blend, along with other active ingredients to help stretch physical endurance and promotes muscle growth and overall health.

Pros

  • Its blend includes citrulline, creatine, beta-alanine and a highly soluble pharmaceutical grade fermented L-Leucine, one of the key components of BCAA.
  • It contains various nutrients and amino acids that help in muscle cells bulking, speed up the recovery process and enhance cognitive power.
  • ​It is also laden with essential vitamins and minerals such as B-Complex (Vitamins B 1,2,3,6 and 12), Calcium, Potassium, Magnesium and Phosphorous.
  • ​It is free of carbs, sugar, and stimulants.
  • It is proven effective in helping bodybuilders get primed for competitions.

Cons

  • It doesn’t specify the exact amount of each ingredient included in its blend, just the total weight (9.38g) of the combined components in each serving.

5. 360 NitroDrive Caffeine-free Stimulant

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Via: Amazon.com

This product is definitely one of the all-star players in the field. Not only that is packing with robust amounts of citrulline malate, creatine HCL, and beta-alanine, it also contains hefty servings of glycerol, which helps deter dehydration and improve overall athletic performance.

The Best Caffeine-Free Pre-workout Supplement

Consistently faring well in reviews issued by reputable product testers and independent users, NitroDrive is widely considered as one of the top pre-workout supplements in the market. It doesn’t disappoint any ardent bodybuilder’s expectations in terms of getting persistent energy surge and muscle building proficiency.

Pros

  • Proven to be an effective vasodilator and NO production stimulator, it aids well in causing good quality and long lasting pump, thus enabling users to train harder and longer, thereby gaining significant lean muscle mass.
  • It contains active ingredients that facilitate rapid fat loss without the perils of extreme dehydration.
  • ​It also carries a hefty amount of taurine that helps to protect the body from various heart and liver diseases and other life-threatening conditions such as hypertension, cystic fibrosis, diabetes and high cholesterol.
  • ​It doesn’t interfere with normal sleep patterns.
  • ​It tastes good.

Cons

  • May cause temporary tingling sensation after 20 to 30 minutes of taking it due to its high beta-alanine content. Begin your workout once you felt said side effect, so it would fade faster.
  • Its composition also causes mild stomach issues to some people, but again, it usually lasts for just a few minutes.

Conclusion:

It is undeniable that each of the caffeine-free PWO supplements that we discussed here is effective in its own right and has its own merits and hitches. Picking the right one depends on your own fitness goals. Whether you want to get leaner or bulkier, agiler or more imposing, there is definitely one that will work well for you among the products listed here.

Based on its benefits, however, 360 Nitro-drive would be your best bet, especially if you’re just starting out. It has very little negative effects on your body if taken properly, and it produces great results without having to rely on caffeine. The best part is it tastes great!

If this list has helped your workouts in any way at all, feel free to leave a comment. We’d love to hear your opinion on other caffeine-free workout supplements that have worked for you.

If this list has helped your workouts in any way at all, feel free to leave a comment. We’d love to hear your opinion on other caffeine-free workout supplements that have worked for you.

HeroMuscles.Com
Chester Peterson
 

I'm Chester, the father of two children. I workout every day and I really want to share with you my knowledge and experience about my passion on this blog. It would be great if you dropped by, read what I wrote and left some comments.

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